On Tuesday evening, Jam Cruise 17 set sail from Miami, FL to begin a newly-expanded, six-day floating musical excursion that stopped in Belize on Thursday and Cozumel, Mexico yesterday, and Progreso, Mexico today. Tomorrow, the ship will head back toward Miami, where it will finish its trip on Florida on Monday, January 21st.
Following a stop to check out Cozumel, the music schedule on the boat continued on Friday with performances by Toubab Krewe, Galactic, Leftover Salmon, TAUK, Sister Sparrow, Spafford, The Nth Power, The Sweet Lillies, magicgravy, The Whole Other, an all-star Tribute to The Band, a funky Jam Room session led by Big Sam, and much more.
With multiple sets running simultaneously throughout the day, night and well into Saturday morning, it was impossible to catch all the amazing performances and collaborations that went down onstage throughout the Norwegian Jade. However, here’s just a few of the most memorable moments from the fourth day of Jam Cruise 17. (You can also head to Live For Live Music‘s Instagram and Instagram stories to follow along in real time).
Galactic Throws Down With Some Exciting Guests On The Pool Deck
Galactic’s pool deck set has been one of the most highly anticipated Jam Cruise 17 sets since the ship set sail on Tuesday. There’s no band more synonymous with Jam Cruise—they’re the only act that’s been on the boat for each of its 17 voyages. In addition to rocking a number of funky fan-favorite originals, Galactic welcomed a number of exciting guests throughout their standout set, including Big Sam, the Turkuaz Horns, and Roosevelt Collier. The set’s most memorable highlight, however, was when Fruition‘s Mimi Naja and Jay Cobb Anderson joined in to help Erica Falls on vocals for a high-octane rendition of “Like A Rolling Stone”, then stuck around and welcomed their Fruition bandmate Kellen Asebroek as well for a funky cover of “No Diggity”. You can check out the Galactic/Fruition collabs below.
The Sweet Lillies Recruit George Porter Jr, Roosevelt Collier, & More For Genre-Bending Bluegrass Performance
If you’re not up on The Sweet Lillies yet, it’s time to get familiar. Despite drawing a smaller crowd in the Spinnaker Lounge, the Colorado-based Americana crew—comprised of Julie Gussaroff (upright bass, vocals), Becca Bisque (viola, vocals), and Melly Frances (washboard, vocals)—put on one of the most memorable sets of the day on Jam Cruise. From their beautiful originals to their reworked bluegrass renditions of throwback hits like 1995 R&B smash “This Is How We Do It”, Phil Collins‘ “In The Air Tonight”, and Gorillaz‘ “Clint Eastwood”, the talented ladies of The Sweet Lillies never ceased to surprise and entertain their crowd. The cherry on top came in the form of a pair of memorable sit-ins—first, by bass legend George Porter Jr., and second, by Roosevelt Collier and Fruition’s Kellen Asebroek. This band undoubtedly picked up some excited new fans with this set—us included.
Leftover Salmon Does Their Best Khruangbin Impression, Honors Col. Bruce, Proves Why They’re Still One Of The Best In The Business
Leftover Salmon is celebrating their 30th anniversary, and after their memorable day one performance in the Stardust Theater and last night’s incredible Pool Deck set, it’s clear that they’re still one of the best bands on the road today. There are few frontmen with the presence and charisma of Vince Herman (acoustic guitar, vocals) and few instrumentalists with the stylistic diversity and technical prowess of Drew Emmitt (mandolin, electric guitar, fiddle, vocals). The band’s pool deck set once again had Jam Cruise enthralled, laughing, and dancing along. From guest spots by Jon Stickley, Roosevelt Collier, Karl Denson, Andy Frasco, Ernie Chang (The U.N.), and Sammi Garett (Turkuaz) to an astral tribute to Col. Bruce Hampton to a hilarious Khruangbin impression complete with black wigs and Laura Lee dance moves, this set was one of the most entertaining and impressive to go down on the boat thus far.
An Army Of Artists Packs Out The Bliss Lounge For A Late-Night Tribute To The Band
After the clock struck midnight, a massive crew of artists from across the lineup threw down a revelrous tribute to The Band, drawing what was easily the biggest crowd of the week in the Bliss Lounge. How big a crew? The list of performers included Chris Spies, Aaron Wilkinson, Michelangelo Carubba, Jeff Franco, Kevin Scott, Chris Chew, Chris Brouwers, Greg Sanderson, George Porter Jr., Robert Mercurio, Jeff Raines, Phil Rodriguez, Brian Braham, Vince Herman, Adryon De León, Kim Dawson, Jennifer Hartswick, Jeremy Salken, Jackson Kincheloe, Tori Pater, Peter Stelling, Mike Tallman, DJ Williams, Stanton Moore, and more. With some of the most talented musicians on the ship paying homage to The Band’s beloved catalog, this dance party/sing0along was easily one of the most fun Jam Cruise experiences of the evening.
TAUK Rocks The Pool Deck With Cosmic Jams, Welcomes Members Of The Motet For Some “Jalbert-On-Jalbert Love”
Instrumental prog-jam quartet TAUK held down the final late-night spot on the Pool Deck on Friday, taking Jam Cruise on a ride through the cosmos. Among several highlights of the performance was a surprise collaboration with Lyle Divinsky (vocals) and Ryan Jalbert (guitar) of The Motet for Prince‘s “Head”. As Lyle and TAUK drummer Isaac Teel excitedly reminded the crowd, the Jalbert-on-Jalbert love (that’s Ryan Jalbert and TAUK guitarist Matt Jalbert) was strong on this one.
The Nth Power Showcases Their Versatility With A Stream Of Special Guests At The Stardust Theater
The Nth Power took the stage after 2 a.m. for the final set of the night in the Stardust Theater, and while the Jam Cruise crowd trickled into the set somewhat tired, they left dancing. The core group of Nick Cassarino (guitar, vocals), Nikki Glaspie (drums, vocals), and Nate Edgar (bass) held down the fort as they welcomed a number of exciting guests, including an extended sit-in by Jennifer Hartswick (vocals, trumpet) and a Nirvana tribute sung with abandon by Skerik. All that led to the set’s most memorable moment, a searing rendition of Earth, Wind & Fire‘s “Shining Star” featuring Brandon “Taz” Niederauer, Joey Porter (The Motet), and keyboardist Rob Marscher as well as Skerik (sax) and Hartswick (trumpet).
Big Sam Gets The Jam Room Grooving Late Into The Night With A Little Help From His Friends
The Big Sam-hosted Jam Room session kept the party funky well into Saturday morning, as a parade of artists including Sammi Garett (Turkuaz), Arleigh Kincheloe (Sister Sparrow), the Turkuaz Horns, Parris Fleming (The Motet), Roosevelt Collier, Brian Moss (Spafford), and many more collaborated for feel-good sing-alongs like “Tell Me Something Good” by Rufus & Chaka Khan.